A Little Night Music will be the second Menier musical currently running in the West End. Terry Johnson’s revival of Jerry Herman’s La Cage Aux Folles, which was first seen in Southwark last Christmas, continues its West End run at the Playhouse Theatre, where Graham Norton has taken over from original star Douglas Hodge as drag queen Zaza. It won two Whatsonstage.com Theatregoers’ Choice Awards – Best Choreographer (Lynne Page, who has also choreographed Nunn’s production) and Best Supporting Actress in a Musical (Tracie Bennett) on Sunday.
In total, A Little Night Music will be the seventh West End transfer for the Menier in the five years since it was founded in 2004. In addition to La Cage Aux Folles, it follows Fully Committed, Little Shop of Horrors, Dealer’s Choice, Maria Friedman: Re-Arranged and, the venue’s most successful production to date, fellow Sondheim revival, Sunday in the Park with George, which also won five Olivier Awards and transferred to Broadway after the West End.
Inspired by Ingmar Bergman’s 1955 Swedish film and written largely in waltz time, A Little Night Music concerns the tangled romantic lives of several couples in Sweden at the turn of the 20th century. The score includes the Grammy Award-winning ballad “Send in the Clowns”.
Nunn’s acclaimed production features Hannah Waddingham and Alexander Hanson as Desiree and Fredrik, along with I’d Do Anything contestant Jessie Buckley as the naïve teenager Anne, and Maureen Lipman as Madame Armfeldt. Others who will also be reprising their performances in the West End include Kelly Price, Kaisa Hammarlund and Gabriel Vick. The revival opened at the Chocolate Factory, marking Nunn’s Sondheim and Chocolate Factory debut, on 3 December 2008 (previews from 22 November).
A Little Night Music has musical supervision by Caroline Humphris, set and costume design by David Farley, orchestrations by Jason Carr, with lighting by Hartley T A Kemp and sound by Gareth Owen. It’s produced in the West End by David Babani for Chocolate Factory Productions, Andrew Fell and Nica Burns and Max Weitzenhoffer for Nimax Theatres.
- by Terri Paddock
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